MoD taps up its own staff for security work

Ministry of Defence reveals new aptitude test to uncover security talents in armed forces personnel

Army boots

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) is hoping to bridge the security skills gap by tapping into the innate talents of its existing workforce. 

The MoD revealed it has worked with IBM to create a Defence Cyber Aptitude Test (DCAT) to uncover armed forces personnel who have natural talents for "cyber work". 

The test is above and beyond existing selection measures the ministry already uses to decide which military staff would succeed in cyber units, it said. 

The DCAT doesn't measure existing technical knowledge, instead testing "a range of cognitive challenges". It will be used in the early stages of training to suss out potential talent. 

Advertisement - Article continues below

"It's a useful tool for service career and branch managers to help identify individuals with natural talent and the right skills to succeed at the cutting edge of defence cyber operations," said project lead for cyber tests, Major Harry Porteous. 

The move comes amid a security skills shortage, with calls for industry and universities to step up and help fill the gap

Discussing the aptitude test, Porteous told an HR conference (via Recruiter): "We are in a skills arms race."

At the end of last year, the government pledged to double security spending to 1.9 billion over the next five years, including a National Cyber Centre to be established this year. 

Featured Resources

The IT Pro guide to Windows 10 migration

Everything you need to know for a successful transition

Download now

Managing security risk and compliance in a challenging landscape

How key technology partners grow with your organisation

Download now

Software-defined storage for dummies

Control storage costs, eliminate storage bottlenecks and solve storage management challenges

Download now

6 best practices for escaping ransomware

A complete guide to tackling ransomware attacks

Download now



Google confirms Android cameras can be hijacked to spy on you

20 Nov 2019

Most Popular

Microsoft Azure

Microsoft, not Amazon, is going to win the cloud wars

30 Nov 2019
Business strategy

Huawei takes the US trade sanctions into its own hands

3 Dec 2019

Five signs that it’s time to retire IT kit

29 Nov 2019
Mobile Phones

Pablo Escobar's brother launches budget foldable phone

4 Dec 2019